Did LDS stake president’s talk get too political?

Posted at 9:35 PM, Feb 22, 2013
and last updated 2013-02-22 23:35:30-05

SANDY, Utah - A recent talk by a stake president for the Church of the Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is sparking debate.

The talk was given by Hidden Valley Stake President Matthew DeVisser in Sandy on Feb. 3. He looked back on some political events from 2012.

"The U.N. ambassador was instructed by the White House to cover up what happened in Libya, attempting to minimize the deaths of four Americans were murdered," he said. "In 2012, the voice of the people spoke loudly and clearly as it chose socialism over capitalism, entitlements over free enterprise, redistribution and regulation over self-reliance."

Crystal Young-Otterstrom, chair of the LDS Democrats Caucus, says this type of talk isn't appropriate from the pulpit.

"I do feel like he was abusing his privilege a bit and I wish he had not made such politically-charged comments. I am sure there are members of his congregation who didn't like what he had to say and probably didn't feel the spirit then," she said. "Those are things that don't deserve to be on the pulpit when it's not part of our doctrine. Nowhere in our scripture does it say that capitalism and free enterprise in the one true economic system."

DeVisser said in his talk that he didn't intend to be controversial, political or even dire. He says he just wanted to state the facts as he saw them.

The LDS Church has a standing policy that it remains neutral on political issues and parties and does not allow its buildings to be used for political purposes.